Hauling Ice Cream
Ice cream is associated with being a fun and chill product, but when it comes to hauling this commodity, things can get complicated.
What truly makes ice cream is its flavor and texture. These can be affected if a disruption or error occurs during shipping. Some believe this is the most challenging product to ship in the cold chain (supply chain for temperature-sensitive products).
The Biggest Challenge to Ice Cream
Heat is the biggest threat to the ice cream you are hauling. The temperature range ice cream is typically shipped in is roughly between -0.4°F to -13°F. If the product experiences a rise in temperature, the chemical structure becomes permanently altered. According to Palsgaard, “As temperatures rise, ice crystals melt and air cells collapse, and neither of these effects can be restored by lowering the temperature again. [Ice Cream] can suffer severe damage, including changes in flavor, color, texture, smoothness and even the state of packaging.”
To avoid a potential loss, read the Bill of Lading for the refrigeration requirements. Different flavors of ice cream can have alternate melting points. According to the Insulated Products Corp, adding chocolate chips or marshmallows can further complicate refrigeration requirements. In Addition, you should monitor the weather to best plan how the outside temperatures may affect your load. Loads may be denied for spikes in temperature. If possible, keep the doors closed.
The best way to combat the heat is by maintaining/understanding your reefer and preparing it for the load ahead. Refrigerated trailers are one of the top essential pieces in the cold chain. The easiest way to ensure a reefer unit will run smoothly is by having it checked every 30 days. Also, keep a record of your reefer checks in-case you need your reefer breakdown coverage. Before any load you take, you must remember to precool your unit beforehand. When you get a new trailer, you take the time to understand its temp settings.
When considering hauling ice cream as a commodity, make sure your agent lists it as ice cream. If you believe your load may have been altered at any point in your journey, let your broker and insurance agent know as soon as possible.
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